February 2012

1 February 2012

Top stories this month

The UK government advisory body the Human Genomics Strategy Group has set out recommendations for the adoption of genomic technologies across the National Health Service (NHS); the PHG Foundation has responded positively with additional suggestions on the training of public health professionals.

Opinion: Cord blood banking – who benefits?

News of the first instance of a UK NHS hospital integrating private cord blood banking services in public antenatal care provokes questions of public benefit.

Genetic health services

Norway reveals laudable plans to integrate stratified cancer medicine in the public health service and genetic embryo screening for IVF is to be offered for the first time in Ireland.

Genomic data, privacy and ethics

Legal and ethical issues surrounding the storage and use of genomic data for medical research are under investigation around the world.

Law, regulation and consultation

New policy and guidance for drug companies on pharmacogenetic issues is on the way in Europe, whilst in the US a resolution to the human gene patent issue is still awaited.

Mitochondrial disease

As the UK plans a public consultation on genetic techniques to prevent inherited mitochondrial disease, research identifies new diagnostic methods for the conditions.

Genetic therapeutics

We report on new developments in gene therapy, stem cell therapeutics, and a novel combination of both approaches used against Huntington's disease.

Genetics and disease risk

New research has shed light on elements of genetic risk of diabetes (including a gene-environment association), heart disease, prostate and ovarian cancers, as well as aspects of ageing. Evidence suggests obesity can also influence the risk of birth defects.

New reviews and commentaries

Other news